EASTER MESSAGE FROM FATHER SAHD

Dear friend,

Right now, there are so many fears facing us – fears about contracting the Coronavirus, fears about employment, fears about making ends meet, fears about the future, fears about maintaining businesses, and myriad concerns about our families and our children – it seems to be a time when every reason to be anxious is being magnified.  

I promise you that this little Novena of Surrender which is included as an attachment of this email will be a help to anyone who is being wounded now by worry. It has been tremendously helpful to me. Please take a moment to look at it. It is a simple novena, which is based on the daily repetition of an even simpler prayer: “O Jesus, I surrender myself to you. Take care of everything.”

Novenas are powerful. A novena is nine days of prayer, dedicated to asking God for the power of His Divine Help. The first novena is found in the Bible, when Jesus, at His Ascension, commanded His Apostles to wait for the promised Holy Spirit. The Apostles spent nine days praying in the Upper Room, and on the day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit came upon them and the Blessed Mother with great power from on high. 

Father Langan and I hope that this little novena will help you and anyone you may share it with to place complete confidence In Jesus for every single detail of your life. He is waiting to receive our trust, and when we give it to Him, He will surround us in His Providence,and then there will be nothing we should fear – True God and True Man, He will take care of everything. 

Thank you for praying this novena with the other members of our parish. 

Sincerely, 
Fr. Christopher Sahd

NOVENA OF SURRENDER TO THE WILL OF GOD

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Day 1

NOVENA OF SURRENDER TO THE WILL OF GOD

Revealed by Jesus Christ to Fr. Dolindo Ruotolo

Why do you confuse yourselves by worrying? Leave the care of your affairs to me, and everything will be peaceful. I say to you in truth that every act of true, blind, complete surrender to me produces the effect that you desire and resolves all difficult situations. O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (say this refrain 10 times)

Day 2

Surrender to me does not mean to fret, to be upset, or to lose hope, nor does it mean offering to me a worried prayer asking me to follow you and change your worry into prayer. It is against this surrender, deeply against it, to worry, to be nervous and to desire to think about the consequences of anything. It is like the confusion that

children feel when they ask their mother to see to their needs, and then try to take care of those needs for themselves so that their childlike efforts get in their mother’s way.Surrender means to placidly close the eyes of the soul, to turn away from thoughts of tribulation and to put yourself in my care, so that only I act, saying You take care of it. O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 3

How many things I do when the soul, in so much spiritual and material need turns to me, looks at me and says to me; “You take care of it,” then close its eyes and rests. In pain you pray for me to act, but that I act in the way you want. You do not turn to me, instead, you want me to adapt to your ideas. You are not sick people who ask the doctor to cure you, but rather sick people who tell the doctor how to. So do not act this way, but pray as I taught you in the Our Father: “Hallowed be thy Name”, that is, be glorified in my need. “Thy kingdom come”, that is, let all that is in us and in the world be in accord with your kingdom. “Thy will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven”, that is, in our need, decide as you see fit for our temporal and eternal life. If you say to me truly: “Thy will be done” which is the same as saying: “You take care of it,” I will intervene with all my omnipotence, and I will resolve the most difficult situations.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 4

You see evil growing instead of weakening? Do not worry, Close your eyes and say to me with faith: “Thy will be done, You take care of it.” I say to you that I will take care of it, and that I will intervene as does a doctor and I will accomplish miracles when they are needed. Do you see that the sick person is getting worse? Do not be upset, but close your eyes and say, “You take care of it.” I say to you that I will take care of it, and that there is no medicine more powerful than my loving intervention. By my love, I promise this to you.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 5

And when I must lead you on a path different from the one you see, I will prepare you; I will carry you in my arms; I will let you find yourself, like children who have fallen asleep in their mother’s arms, on the other bank of the river. What troubles you

and hurts you immensely are your reason, your thoughts and worry, and your desire at all costs to deal with what afflicts you.
O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 6

You are sleepless; you want to judge everything, direct everything and see to everything and you surrender to human strength, or worse – to men themselves, trusting in their intervention, – this is what hinders my words and my views. Oh how much I wish from you this surrender, to help you and how I suffer when I see you so agitated! Satan tries to do exactly this: to agitate you, and to remove you from my protection and to throw you into the jaws of human initiative. So, trust only in me, rest in me, surrender to me in everything.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 7

I perform miracles in proportion to your full surrender to me and to your not thinking of yourselves. I sow treasure troves of graces when you are in the deepest poverty. No person of reason, no thinker, has ever performed miracles, not even among the saints. He does divine works whosoever surrenders to God. So don’t think about it anymore, because your mind is acute and for you it is very hard to see evil and to trust in me and to not think of yourself. Do this for all your needs, do this all of you and you will see great continual silent miracles. I will take care of things, I promise this to you.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 8

Close your eyes and let yourself be carried away on the flowing current of my grace; close your eyes and do not think of the present, turning your thoughts away from the future just as you would from temptation. Repose in me, believing in my goodness, and I promise you by my love that if you say, “You take care of it,” I will take care of it all; I will console you, liberate you and guide you.

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times)

Day 9

Pray always in readiness to surrender, and you will receive from it great peace and great rewards, even when I confer on you the grace of immolation, of repentance and of love. Then what does suffering matter? It seems impossible to you? Close your eyes and say with all your soul, “Jesus, you take care of it.” Do not be afraid, I will take care of things and you will bless my name by humbling yourself. A thousand prayers cannot equal one single act of surrender, remember this well. There is no novena more effective than this:

O Jesus, I surrender myself to you, take care of everything! (10 times) To Mary, the Mother of God

Mother, I am yours now and forever. Through you and with you
I always want to belong completely to Jesus. Amen.

Fr. Dolindo (1882-1970) was an Italian priest from Naples who received the stigmata (the wounds of Jesus in his own body). Jesus gave this novena to him in prayer. Use this novena each day in order to make an offering of your own problems and concerns to Jesus, Who has promised, Amen, amen, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in my name he will give you. Until now you have not asked anything in my name; ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be complete.” John 16:23-24

EASTER MESSAGE FROM Father Langan

Dear Parishioners, 

In spite of all the present restrictions, both diocesan and governmental, the life of your Parish goes on. Perhaps limping, (like your pastor), but nonetheless carrying on the mission entrusted to us by Christ our Lord. We are trying, for the first time, new means of reaching out to you during the prevailing pandemic, and so we rely upon your kindness and patience as we try best to serve you. 

I want to express my profound thanks to our Finance Council chairman, Pete Goyette, and the fellow members of our council as well as our parish staff in undertaking the monumental task of the 2020 Parish Census. The reason for it is simple: a shepherd must know his flock. For some time now we have been floundering in seeking out who belongs to this family. We do not want any to “fall through the cracks”, so to speak. Your kind cooperation helps us to reach out to those who may have been missed – certainly not intentionally. So thank you for your timely response. 

After collating the information we have received we will publish the results for your information. Again this will greatly assist us in being better able to serve you. Thank you also for your endless spiritual support and your generous contributions in keeping the parish afloat. 

Fr. Sahd and I extend our blessings for your good health and well-being in these uncertain times. Our hope is that every Good Friday is followed by Easter Sunday. You are remembered and loved in all our Paschaltide Masses.  

Yours in Christ,

Fr. Langan

Holy Week Services Update

Holy Week services will be live-streamed through the St. John the Evangelist Parish Facebook page. The schedule is as follows:

Palm Sunday, April 5 10:30 AM

Holy Thursday, April 9 7:00 PM

Stations of the Cross, April 10. 9:00 AM (This will not be live streamed. It will be a recorded broadcast)

Good Friday, April 10 Noon

Tenebrae, April 10 7:00 PM

Easter Vigil, April 11 8:00 PM

Easter Sunday, April 12 10:30 PM

For those who do not have Facebook, please click or go to the link below:

https://www.facebook.com/stjohnshonesdale/

and you will be taken to the St. John the Evangelist Facebook page. Please know that there are other Facebook pages that have been made for our parish, but they are not maintained by the Parish Office, and, therefore, will not have the current Masses and information.

Bishop’s Message – April 2

Reverend and Dear Father,

As Holy Week draws near, I have recorded a new message for the faithful of the Diocese of Scranton that I encourage you to share with your people, inviting all of us to join together in prayer. Please share it on your website, social media pages and using your other vehicles of communication.

The video message link is: https://youtu.be/IBdJtccxeyI

I am also requesting that each church of our Diocese join together in a small, yet significant way beginning this weekend.

For five days, beginning on Palm Sunday, April 5, 2020 and continuing daily through Thursday, April 9, 2020, I ask that you ring the bells of your church each day for sixty seconds at noon, as a means of calling us all to unite in prayer during the COVID-19 pandemic.

My hope is that the bells will not only unite people in prayer, but bring some comfort to those who are inside their homes and may feel isolated.

While our public Masses may be suspended at this time, I believe that people who hear the ringing bells will be reminded that our Church is still active and praying for an end to this illness which has caused such great pain and suffering.

Thank you for all that you are doing. You continue to be in my prayers.

Faithfully yours in Christ,

†Joseph C. Bambera

Most Reverend Joseph C. Bambera, D.D., J.C.L.

Bishop of Scranton

Faith Formation Parents

Please check your emails for information from your child(ren)’s teacher(s) concerning upcoming assignments and online sessions. Online meetings are being held by Anastasia Legg for parents at 6:30pm April 2, 3, & 4th. If you did not receive an invite, please email rel.ed.stjohnshonesdale@verizon.net.

Magnificat Orders

We are now taking new and renewal orders for the publication “Magnificat.” Each issue consists of daily readings from Mass, morning and evening prayers, daily meditations and short stories about the saints. One year subscriptions are $36.00 when placed in bulk order and delivered to the parish office. Orders accompanied by payment will be taken until April 28. Make checks payable to St. John the Evangelist Parish. Subscriptions begin with the July 2020 issue.

Offertory Collection

A mail slot has been installed in the door of the Parish Office for the convenience of the parishioners of St. John the Evangelist. Offertory envelopes may be placed through the slot at any time.

MESSAGE FROM BISHOP BAMBERA-MARCH 25

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Four weeks ago today, Lent began with the celebration of Ash Wednesday and its cherished invitation to rend our hearts and return to the Lord. We embraced this holy season of penance, sacrifice and conversion, hoping and praying that as Lent annually carries us to Holy Week and Easter, our lives of faith would be renewed and reflect a bit more clearly the life and love of Jesus. On Ash Wednesday, none of us could have imagined the depth of sacrifice that the current health crisis would demand of us. 

On March 16, 2020, I suspended the celebration of all public Masses in the eleven counties of the Diocese of Scranton. While so many of you expressed how heartbroken you were with this decision, you embraced it willingly in a spirit of faith and self-sacrifice in order that the Church could do its part in mitigating the spread of the coronavirus.

Today, sadly, we are called to sacrifice even further for the sake of serving one another in our battle against this dreaded disease. The cherished Liturgies of Holy Week and Easter – Palm Sunday, the Mass of the Lord’s Supper followed by Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, the Celebration of the Lord’s Passion, the Great Vigil of Easter and Easter Sunday Masses – will all be celebrated privately, without all of you, the blessed faithful who make up the Diocese of Scranton – filling our churches as you have always done during these most sacred days. The Chrism Mass will be deferred to a later date when the current health crisis has passed.

While this ongoing pandemic is calling us to be socially distant from one another, it does not mean we need to be spiritually distant. I invite you and your family to join me in prayer as we renew our efforts to turn to the Lord. While not open to the public, all of our Holy Week liturgies at the Cathedral of Saint Peter in Scranton will be broadcast on CTV: Catholic Television and live-streamed on the Diocese of Scranton’s website and social media platforms. Many parishes will also plan to broadcast their own Masses.

As we seek to come to terms with this latest casualty of the coronavirus, I want to share with you a recent encouraging directive of the Holy See regarding the Sacrament of Reconciliation, firmly rooted in the traditions of our Church. With the increasing difficulty for individuals to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation due to the current health crisis, the faithful are reminded that by having perfect contrition, one can receive the forgiveness of sins apart from going to confession.  Perfect contrition requires the following three things: a love of God above all else; a sincere desire for the forgiveness from sin; and the resolution to go to confession as soon as possible when this health crisis subsides. Please take consolation in knowing that while you may not have access to the Sacrament of Reconciliation, the power and love of God is far greater than we can imagine. For all who sincerely express contrition, your sins are forgiven.

My friends, in so many respects, it seems that the disciplines of Lent will last a bit longer this year as we continue to sacrifice, to pray and to serve in unimaginable ways. Yet, through God’s grace, I hope that we can begin to see one of the blessings of this difficult moment in our lives. In the midst of this crisis, so many of you are responding generously and courageously to the Gospel invitation to walk in the footsteps of Jesus, sacrificing our own well-being and serving selflessly the lives that God places in our own.

As we confront the uncertainty of our future, may we recognize that our greatest hope has always been rooted in our embrace of the mystery of Jesus’ suffering, death and resurrection – the heart of our faith as Christians. Good Friday, with its suffering and pain, always yields to power of Easter and its promise of life and peace! So too will this moment in our lives.

May God continue to bless you and your family and keep you safe. 

Saint Joseph, pray for us!

Faithfully yours in Christ,

   †Joseph C. Bambera

    Most Reverend Joseph C. Bambera, D.D., J.C.L.

    Bishop of Scranton

Directive from the Apostolic Penitentiary of the Holy See to be Used in the Diocese of Scranton

PERFECT CONTRITION

With the increasing difficulty for individuals to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation due to the current health crisis, the faithful of the Diocese of Scranton are reminded that by having perfect contrition one can receive the forgiveness of sins, apart from going to confession.  

Perfect contrition requires the following three things: 

  • A love of God above all else
  • A sincere desire for the forgiveness from sin
  • The resolution to go to confession as soon as possible when this health crisis subsides

PLENARY INDULGENCE

His Holiness, Pope Francis, has also granted a plenary indulgence under specific conditions.

The faithful who qualify for a plenary indulgence during the coronavirus pandemic:

  • Those suffering from the coronavirus illness
  • Health care workers, family members, and others caring for those with the coronavirus (exposing themselves to the virus)

The faithful must do at least one of the following:

  • Unite yourself spiritually through the media in the celebration of the Holy Mass
  • Recite the Rosary
  • Pious practice of the Way of the Cross (or other forms of devotion)
  • Recite the Creed, the Lord’s Prayer, and a Hail Mary

The faithful must be willing to perform all of the following as soon as possible: (considered the three usual conditions for a plenary indulgence)

  • Going to Confession
  • Receiving Holy Communion
  • Praying for the intentions of Pope Francis